New beginnings

It feels like so long since I wrote a blog post that I’m honestly not sure where to start. If you regularly follow my posts you’ll know the last few months have been extremely difficult as I adjust to a strange new life without my husband Sam. And like many of us, my body and brain are so hardwired to be constantly on the go that it feels strange not to be working on a new design, updating the BIPOC in Fiber directory or writing a column for Laine Magazine.

I’m learning to accept this strangeness as part of my journey of grief into a new phase of my life. One that still isn’t clear to me as yet and, will no doubt take a while to reveal itself. I’ve come to accept that one day will be better (I’m not quite ready to describe those days as ‘good’) and others will seem unbearable. And, I’ve learned from my daily mindfulness practice that however intense those emotions feel, they are transient. Something that’s particularly important when the days aren’t so good. On those days I snuggle up with Mum’s blankie, the cat and if I’m up to it, some knitting. If not I’ll rest and hope the next day is a better one.

Over the new few months I’ll continue to do this and whatever else I need to look after myself. It means I may be quiet but I won’t have gone away. When I treated myself this above 2022 diary from I wanted something that would be joyful, both to look at and to use. I aim to fill it with activities that will nourish my brain, heart and body; be that self care, crafting/making, gardening, reading, walking along the seafront or journalling. And, while I’m not taking on any new work projects for the foreseeable future I’m looking forward to fulfilling work commitments arranged over the last year. The first of these is opening this Sunday’s Waltham Abbey Wool Show (WAWS).

Doris, the Waltham Abbey Wool Show mascot

Having attended the very first WAWS as a vendor I opened last year’s online event and am genuinely excited (and more than a little nervous) to be opening this weekend’s show. As their VIP guest – God bless them, me, a VIP – I’ll be judging the Handmade Toy Competition and having a wander around the show before returning to my stand where I’ll be selling copies of Warm Hands alongside some must-have BIPOC in Fiber merchandise. BIPOC in Fiber is still very much alive but as I hope you’ll understand I need to take time out in order to come back with some semblance of strength.

So if you’re coming to the show on Sunday please come up and say hi. I’m happy to sign your copy of Warm Hands, talk about BIPOC in Fiber, see what you’re making or what you’ve bought. I know it’s been a while since we were able to mingle in-person but the show’s organisers, Kate Towerzey & Diana Bensted are doing all they can to make the event as safe as possible and I plan on doing my Covid lateral flow test beforehand. The show takes place at the Waltham Abbey Marriott Hotel and opens when I cut the (pink) ribbon at 10.00am. To find out more visit the Waltham Abbey Wool Show website.

Look forward to seeing you there,

J x

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